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I'm in 4-H dog Obedience with Bentley and he has trouble focusing on me. It get's distracted by all the other dogs and get confused when people next to me tell there dogs to sit or down ect.. For example last Tuesday at class I was putting him in a 3 minute down and the girl next to me was putting her dog in a sit.(I have no clue why since the instructor said 3 minute downs). Anyway I told him down and he flopped down with a huge sigh but kept high contact with him. The girl next to me said sit and he sat up! I said ah, down. He laid down. He had eye contact with me the whole time so why did he sit up!? I don't allow anyone else to work with him, just me(except for feeding time or something my mom puts him in a sit and stay and does a few other things with him).


Another problem- on the heel he will glance at me every 5 seconds or so and wait for his next command. But he gets distracted sometimes. If a dog walking behind us gets to close he tries to turn around and sniff him which I then correct him. He is getting better but still needs work. If I am walking to close to someone in front of me then he tried to sniff them or play with them. Again I give him a correction. Should i just keep correcting and he should catch on soon?

One more problem- He has troubles with Stand for Exam. He has always had trust issues with people since I have got him. When the instructor(s) go to walk behind him he walks forward a little or sits down! the instructor tell me I need to socialize him more, I need family to do it, ect. I have told her I have socialized him he just has trust issues. She then told I havn't socialized him enough. Okay, he goes everywhere with me. Goes to the post office, goes to the park, goes to the lake, goes to the store. I take him everywhere I can and he does get socialized. he is fine when they are on the side or in-front but it is when someone walks behind him and he can't see them he gets nervous. I dont mind getting a few points taken off in this category because he is okay with other things(as long as he keeps his focus on me). We are both first years and i dont expect to win or anything!


I don't allow him to interact with any dogs in the beginning of class, except my friends basset hound because me and he talk and they sniff each other,lol. I get to class about 20 minutes early and work with him. it also give him time to sniff around and calm down a little. After class he can socialize a little but only with a few dogs. There are too many DA dogs in class and I dont trust 80% of the dogs there. Should I keep doing this? During class- serious after class can mingle? cause I am being honest the only socilization he gets is at class :redface: no one around me allows there dogs to meet and mingle with other dogs and while we have family member with dogs I would like him meet new dogs.


Thanks if you have made it this far,lol.
 

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1. I imagine he's about 2 yo, so he is still young and easy to distract. That will improve with time and practice. Do not use harsh corrections, just a simple reminder should be enough.
2. He doesn't want to stay down, so any opportunity to Sit is good for him. Simply repeating Down, should be enough for him to learn.
3. When he looks at you during heel, simply smile and praise. Keep guiding him and 'explaining' the heel cue.
4. Socialize - what you've described is location socialization. You can also socialize with lots and lots of different people, asking them to pet him from behind, etc.... so that he gets used to all situations with people touching him all over, from different positions.
5. Socialize2 - In addition, socialize him with friendly dogs after training. If ALL the dogs are DA, I suggest finding a different fenced area to get him to play with other dogs with the same energy that he has.

I've found that when you let Labs play with other equally rough dogs, they eventually learn to be very gentle, b/c they can get it out of their system.
 
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